Hello. Currently, I am quite stressed over my new aquarium after starting to cycle with fish due to many reasons: 1. I was planning to do a fishless cycle but the fish store employee said to do a cycle with a fish (which I knew was wrong and I now regret it) and my parents bought 9 neon tetras, which is causing me stress. 2. The water is extremely cloudy because we didn't clean the sand since the LFS said not to. Due to the limited visibility, I can't see if my fish are okay or not. 3. When I try feeding the fish, I don't see them eating the food (maybe due to cloudy water). Also adding to the problem, the sand substrate is full of dirt and I don't know if it's food or dirt. I also think there is left over food and most fishes aren't eating and I am very worried. 4. I am extremely unprepared. We didn't buy a test kit because my parents said not to as the LFS said to just go the fish store in a week to test the water. Furthermore, I don't have a thermometer or a sand siphon cleaner. I don't know the pH, water parameters etc. and I am very worried. 5. While watching the fish trying to eat, I think I saw red gills on one of the neon tetras. This could probably be due to toxic water conditions or high amounts of ammonia. I need serious help on this. 6. The layout of the aquarium don't look that nice. The two driftwood we bought vary greatly. One is a light coloured spider wood that keeps floating while the other is a dark bog wood I think that sunk immediately. I am fine with the darker driftwood but the spider wood annoys me simply because it keeps floating, is quite large for the tank and doesn't look aesthetically appealing since the two wood don't look similar. In addition, I like the rocks I bought but I do not know if my LFS has any more of those rock types. 7. While I tried to make my spider wood sink, I added more sand to the tank. It didn't work so I let the spider wood float but now I'm worried that there's too much sand and gas pockets will start to form. 8. When rearranging the plants, most of them keep floating. I have some stem plants but I don't know the name and when I put it in the sand, it sometimes tends to float up. In addition, I have two anubias nana, one on my dark driftwood and one on some rocks and I believe they're doing fine. Can I have tips on caring for plants please? I would also like to state that the LFS that I go to is good, due to the employees' polite and nice personalities, the wide variety of rocks, wood and animals etc. The only thing I don't trust them that much because is the advice they give such as cycling with fish and another example is when adding a new fish to a tank, they suggest opening the bag and letting the fish swim out, therefore mixing the tank water and fish store water which is a massive no no. But overall, the LFS I go to is quite convenient and nice. For those wondering, this is the tank I have: I also want to prevent stress from my fish and don't want any to die. Can I please just have some tips and advice please to help guide us through this? Thank you.